After having consumed my fair amount of “women magazines” in 4 countries, and having worked in advertisement for women, with women and pushing women-brands, I have suddenly freaked out. Three words: Too.Much.Pressure. But pressure from who, or what? One word: Women. So women are putting lots of pressure on women. Generation after generation, daughters becoming moms who have daughters, who then become moms…you get the point. Then the 60’s and the movement of feminists came up, and Philips Morris launched their Virginia Slims under the slogan “You’ve come a long way, baby.”
Fast forward 50 years and women have come an even longer way. They are highly educated, climbed social and professional ranks, and are simply the product of a generation of women who have fought for equality inside and outside their homes. Yet with these changes come the after-effects. I read in a magazine in Belgium not long ago that our generation (those of us born in the 70’s-80’s) live a life under a constant pressure. The model of the “perfect mother” from the 50’s has evolved to demand from us women to be beautiful, intelligent, bloomed, slim but with the right amount of curves, a sex-bomb, creative and an artist in the kitchen. All of that together with being the ideal mom (and breastfeed), patient, pedagogic, tolerant, in a happy (re)marriage, in great terms with her ex, ambitious but with integrity, and to have a life outside work and being a mom. Phew! and don’t forget to publish on Facebook those fabulous cupcakes that rival the Hummingbird bakery in Portobello Road. And that’s “supermom” for you. Phew!
Thankfully, the Supermom is slowly but surely disappearing – at least among us Millennium women. We no longer want to have everything perfectly in order, and we do not want to be the Supermoms. Sometimes not even moms. Only women, real women who do not feel any guilt over having interests outside being a caretaker, a provider and a nurturer. We are weary of the “mummy-trap”. No longer defined by our husbands (Mrs. John Doe) or our domestic roles (housewife), and no longer wanting exactly the same as the feminists in the 70’s we work, we parent, we lead and we choose.